The European Medicines Agency calls for a reduction of colistin use in animals to control antibiotic resistance

Animal HealthLivestock Sectors

A new mechanism of bacterial resistance to colistin (caused by the mcr-1 gene), was recently discovered and appears to have the potential to spread rapidly. Thus, the European Commission asked to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) to deliver new advice on the use of the antibiotic colistin in animals.

On the 27th of July, the EMA has published the update to its 2013 scientific advice on the use of colistin, following a public consultation. The recommendations say that colistin-containing medicines should only be used as a second line treatment in animals and that colistin is used only to treat clinical conditions for which there are no effective alternative treatments. Colistin sale should be minimised across all European Union (EU) Member States (the goal is to its sales by 65%), to reduce the risk of antimicrobial resistance.

Additional information can be found at

The report is available at


OIE and FAO moves toward the global eradication of PPR

Animal HealthSmall Ruminants

Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR) is a highly contagious viral disease affecting small ruminants, which can kill as many as 90 percent of the animals it infects within days, representing a threat for animal health and welfare, as well as for farming economics.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) started working together in 2011 toward the eradication of PPR and got to obtain the international community to agree, in 2015, on a global strategy for PPR eradication by 2030.

On the 11-12 July, a two day strategy session on PPR eradication was held at FAO’s Rome headquarters, bringing together animal health experts, government representatives, livestock professionals and other stakeholders from around the world. Aim of the initiative, organised by the FAO and the OIE through their Joint PPR Secretariat, to present participants with a workplan for the first five years of the global effort to completely wipe out PPR by 2030 and gather their feedback and input.

The received feedbacks will be incorporated into the plan, which will be finalised and released by next September, and begin mobilizing resources to implement it.

Additional information can be found at


Strengthening of regional prevention and control toward lumpy skin disease

Animal HealthBeef CattleECIP (Dairy Cattle)

Lumpy skin disease (LSD) is an infectious disease of cattle characterised by eruption nodules on the skin and other parts of the body and that produces a chronic debility in infected cattle, provoking serious economic losses. The disease is present in enzootic in many African and Middle East countries, but is actually spreading quickly in the Mediterranean region, and already reached several Eastern European countries (Cyprus, Greece, Bulgaria, FYROM, Serbia and Albania).

On May 11-12th, a workshop was jointly organised by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Commission with the aim of strengthening the regional cooperation in south-eastern Europe and the Middle East for the prevention and control of LSD.

More than 40 experts from across the European Union and beyond attended the workshop. The participants reviewed the latest available information on LSD spread and discussed ways to increase awareness about its impact on animal health. Moreover, new strategies of cooperation to improve surveillance, prevention and control were discussed.

A report, containing the outcomes of the workshop, was released by the EFSA and is now available at It provides an overview of the latest available knowledge on epidemiology, diagnostic and control of lumpy skin disease.

Additional information can be found at

EU council

The EU adopts the new ‘Animal Health Law’

Animal HealthLivestock Sectors

A new Regulation on transmissible animal diseases (“Animal Health Law”) was adopted last March by the European Parliament and the Council. The Regulation was published in the Official Journal on 31 March 2016, entered into force on the 20th of April and will be applicable in 5 years.

This new comprehensive new animal health law will support the EU livestock sector competitiveness and will make market of animals and of their products safer and easier, leading to growth and jobs in this important sector. In particular, the new norm provides for simpler and clearer rules, enabling a better focus on key priorities (i.e. preventing and eradicating diseases), supports an increase in the use of technology for animal health activities (e.g. pathogen surveillance and live animal traceability), helps in the early detection and control of animal disease and sets out a better legal basis for monitoring animal pathogens resistant to antimicrobial agents.

The new Regulation is available at

Additional information at